Thu, Oct 25, 8:59am by Staff Writer
The Australian batting lineup may have a completely different look than the Test side but they didn’t stop yet another stunning batting collapse from the green and gold as they came up 66 runs short in the opening T20 against Pakistan.
Justin Langer’s charges were bundled out for just 89 in 16.5 overs on Wednesday in what skipper Aaron Finch described as an “embarrassing” batting performance in the post match press conference.
Nathan Coulter-Nile was one of just three players who reached double figures, top scoring with 34 while the powerful top order trio of Finch, D’Arcy Short and Glenn Maxwell managed just six runs between them.
If it wasn’t for Coulter-Nile and fellow tailender Ashton Agar’s rearguard action, it could have been a record loss for the Aussies who slumped to a paltry 6/22 in the power play.
The day started much better for the visitors with Finch electing to send the Pakistani’s in and his bowlers backed up that decision, restricting the hosts to a mediocre tally of 8/155.
Queensland quick Billy Stanlake and Western Australia’s fastman Andrew Tye each took three wickets and despite a couple of midfields, the green and gold would have been happy with their efforts in the field at the innings break.
Babar Azam was the only Pakistan bat who got on top of the bowling, scoring a brilliant 68 not out from just 55 balls while he was supported nicely by Mohammad Hafeez who made a crucial 39 off 30 before he was removed by the leg spin of D’Arcy Short.
That’s as good as Short’s night got though, he was the second man out in the first over, making just four runs after his captain was dismissed off the third ball of the match, for a duck.
Imad Wasim took both of those wickets and he was the chief destroyer for Pakistan, finishing with 3/20 off his four overs as his side cruised to victory in the series opener.
The team’s now have 48 hours to prepare for the second match of the series, which takes place 140 kilometres northeast in Dubai.
Finch told the media post match that changes to the lineup would be looked at strongly after an incredibly disappointing performance with the bat.
Australia are $2.14 outsiders with Pakistan at $1.71 for a victory that would see them secure a series win.
The third and final match of the series will also be played in Dubai on Monday morning (AEDT).
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